Eduard Bargheer received his painting and drawing training at the Kunstgewerbeschule Hamburg-Lerchenfeld in 1918. In 1924 he graduated from a teacher training college, after which he began to study at the "Kunstschule Gerda Koppel" under Friedrich Ahlers-Hestermann. In 1925 he received his first scholarship for a trip to Italy. At that time Eduard Bargheer's early style was still marked by a bleak, clayey color scale. The coloring and expression of his works were still under the influence of Edvard Munch, van Gogh's early works and the Flemish Expressionists.
A few years later this changed. In 1929 Eduard Bargheer became a member of the "Hamburger Sezession". A scholarship from the city of Hamburg enabled Bargheer to spend a prolonged period of time in Paris in 1933, with his own studio south of Montparnasse. In late 1935 Eduard Bargheer visited the Italian island of Ischia for the first time, where he met the painters Werner Gilles and Rudolf Levy.
In 1935 the artist also met Paul Klee, whom he visited in Bern a year later. The stylistic change in Bargheer's works was brought about by his move to Foro d'Ischia in 1939. His works from this Italian period show a significant tendency towards abstraction and are characterized by bright colors.
From 1942 to 1944 the artist worked as an interpreter for the German navy in La Spezia. In 1950 Bargheer traveled back to Germany. In 1953 a first comprehensive retrospective took place at the Kestner-Gesellschaft in Hanover.
The artist took part in the Kassel "documenta's" of 1955 and 1959. Subsequently he taught as a guest lecturer and a professor at the universities of Berlin, Hamburg and Rome.
On the occassion of his 75th birthday in 1976, a large retrospective of Bargheer's works took place at the Hamburg "Kunsthaus". The Eduard Bargheer Foundation for the Support of Young Artists was set up.
In 1979 Bergheer died at the age of 78 in Hamburg, the city of his birth.