After defending her PhD in 2014, Cora Gilroy-Ware designed and curated 'Bodies of Nature', an exhibition at Tate Britain centring on the mythological nymph as a recurring figure in British painting, sculpture and works on paper from the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Then, as a year-long Materialities, Texts and Images fellow at the Huntington Library and California Institute of Technology, she curated 'Spirit Boys', a small exhibition of prints and drawings at the Huntington's European Art Gallery showcasing depictions of infant putti from the Renaissance to the 1920s. She also organised an international day conference, 'The Art of Decay', an event that brought together artists, conservators and scholars across disciplines to develop an intellectual framework for the damage and deterioration of artworks, both 'historic' and contemporary. Her work is diachronic, concerned especially with the afterlife of classical aesthetics in industrial modernity.
Her doctoral thesis looked at the changing production, reception and function of ideal beauty in British art between 1798-1840. As a Visiting Research Fellow at the Institute of Advanced Studies, she is working on a book manuscript based on her thesis: Fallen Heroes, Floating Nymphs: a Hidden History of British Art.