CHENNAI: Most commuters walking in and out of the MRTS station at Thiruvanmiyur stopped dead in their tracks for a few seconds and stared, before walking on. The drab, poorly-maintained and ill-lit station wore a completely different look as it plays host to a large format photo exhibition.The walls and pillars stood plastered with huge photographs that captured the essence of Chennai. Some of the pictures that stood out, drew smiles and second looks from unsuspecting passengers, who stopped to ask what was happening. The inauguration of the week-long exhibition, that took place at the Thiruvanmiyur station on Wednesday, also featured a live performance by German jazz ensemble Mahaphon Clang with Ramesh Shotham. The musicians stood among the crowd and used small instruments to great effect, aided by the surprising acoustic effect of the railway station’s atrium. The only thing that was out of their control during the performance was the periodic noise of trains rumbling overhead.The exhibition will be in place at the MRTS stations in Thiruvanmiyur and Thirumayilai till March 21. It is part of the week-long art festival, Art Chennai, in association with the Goethe Institut and Max Mueller Bhavan and was inaugurated by Deepak Krishan, General Manager of Southern Railway.“When we started Art Chennai last year, it was about inclusiveness. Now this effort is aimed at taking art to the public,” said Art Chennai convenor Sanjay Tulsyan. “As more and more people are using these trains we need to bring art into this space,” he added.Deepak Krishan affirmed the Southern Railway’s commitment to such projects that brought art into the public sphere. He toured the exhibition with Stefan Weckbach, Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany and Karl Pechatscheck, Director, Goethe-Institut and Max Mueller Bhavan.