In the course of the twentieth century art has been charged with ever higher requirements by artists and philosophers alike. Art is given a massive and pivotal task in the revolutionary opening up of a new world: to get us out of the instrumentalisation of modernity and capitalism, for instance. In this context it is as if art has
become the desperate last resort for thinkers such as Heidegger, Badiou, Agamben and Critchley. In their work the special role of art has been defined in theological or religious terms. This article takes the conversion of St. Paul, as it is depicted by Pieter Breughel the Elder, as the starting point for an alternative, more humble way of
looking at the role of art in the context of the revolutionary New, and in the process it turns Hannah Arendt and Gilles Deleuze into philosophical and political allies.