TODAY and Tuesday are your last chance to catch FLY, Visual Arts Scotland’s annual open submission Christmas Show. There’s something for most tastes – not least those looking for some quiet amidst the bustle of the festivities outside.

The exhibition is open submission, meaning that any artist can submit work, although only 200 are chosen to exhibit. The result covers all genres from sculpture to tapestry, ceramics to painting, and if the exhibition is very wide-ranging, it is largely very well put together.

The first room hosts the shortlisted entrants for the Cordis Tapestry Prize, the world’s largest. Nothing on a large scale, here, but varied techniques from a day-glo Boris Johnson (Patricia Taylor) to Anna Ray’s technicolour Pointillist. Jo Barker’s abstract Swirl – a black hole ink blot in a sea of pink – was the overall winner. In the middle of the room, a small contrasting focus on wood, from Martin Alan Smith’s Rocking Perch Stools, strangely anthropomorphic, although the strong desire to sit on one and test it has to be contained – to the steam bent ash lamps of the Yellow Broom Studio, made by Edinburgh College of Art Sculpture graduates David Robson and Clare Waddle.

This year, for the first time, VAS and Craft Scotland have collaborated on the exhibition giving a strong ceramics focus to the central room. There are the stomping and glossy architectural forms of James Rigler – not least a gruff pepto-bismol bench with lion paw legs – and the matt animal heads of Susan O’Byrne, a miniature hunting lodge of ceramic trophy heads created digitally printed to look like they are quilted. At the other end of the room, the clean-angled porcelain lines of Lara Scobie’s Tilted Vessels are decorated in simple lines and encircling geometries. Nicola Henderson’s forms are the diametric opposite, a raw heft of raku-fired ceramic, labelled with aptly volcanic names such as Metamorphic Open Bowl or Igneous Basalt form.

There is work from recent graduates, including Norman Sutton-Hibert’s thoughtful and colourful Landscape, a fabric assembly of numerous plastic-tagged figures of different shapes and sizes, rising in a mosaic up to the top of the gallery wall. The most affecting work is Thomas Hawson’s enduring Migrant Memorial. Hawson, who has a fruitful preoccupation with boats and building, has reused a boat he designed and made earlier this year for the Borders Science Festival as a way to remember the 4,000 migrant lives lost at sea so far this year.

Originally constructed from wooden slats, willow and plastic shrink wrap, it was made with workshop participants in a day, before being rowed over the river Tweed. For FLY, Hawson invites gallery visitors to tie a ribbon onto the boat in memory of the migrating peoples who have died. There is something in the transience of the materials used, the fragility, that gives this memorial weight. At this end of the exhibition run, the boat is full of rag ties, scraps of material tied to the boat and to each other, criss-crossing like a fragile super structure, binding the boat – and the visitors passing through – together.

Nearby, amongst a series of artists books and works on paper, Rhona Fairgrieve’s ephemeral Dandelions, an unfolding artist’s book of dandelion seedheads floating off on the breeze.

FLY: Visual Arts Scotland is in the Royal Scottish Academy building's Upper Galleries on The Mound, Edinburgh until Tuesday (but not tomorrow and Monday)