Filmmaker Ulrike Ottinger is generally associated with directors on the experimental fringe of New German Cinema. Her films, written, produced, directed and filmed by herself, are filled with exaggerated colors, interesting camera work, and surprising blends of image and sound. Many of her stories are designed to help people become more focused on their individual reality by depicting people rebelling against living a life of alienation. Ottinger has no formal training in filmmaking; rather, she began her career by studying art. During the '60s, she was a working artist in Paris, but she found it frustrating. Her first film was released in 1972. Laokoon und Soehne was made after she began playing around with photo-documentation and events. In 1977, she created her first feature-length film, Madame X -- Eine absolute Herrscherin, an exploration of the famed pirate queen's lesbian matriarchy.